In the amendment Facebook filed Monday to its S-1 SEC filing, some of the best information about the company is embedded in the infographics it used to illustrate its points. They show a company that's booming, with rampant growth of users and revenue, but they also show a behemoth that's saturated much of the globe save for one glaringly dark patch where China sits.
There was the big blue box at the top of the filing, with news that the company had hit 901 million active monthly users, 3.2 billion likes and comments per day, 300 million photos updated per day, and 125 billion friendships. Last we heard these metrics, around Feb. 1, it was 845 active monthly users, 2.7 billion likes and comments, 250 million photos per day, and 100 billion friendships. So you know, progress. But those big blue and white numbers don't capture the imagination nearly as much as the above map.
Look at the mass of darkness where China is located, the stark border of Russia, the largely un-Facebook penetrated Africa, and the bright slash of Indonesia (at one point, Indonesian became the most-used Asian language on Facebook). That dislocation between population and Facebook users bears out some of the projections the company follows with in its filing, in particular its expansion plans: The first point in its "strategy" rundown reads as follows:
Expand Our Global User Community. We continue to focus on growing our user base across all geographies, including relatively less-penetrated, large markets such as Brazil, Germany, India, Japan, Russia, and South Korea. We intend to grow our user base by continuing our marketing and user acquisition efforts and enhancing our products, including mobile apps, in order to make Facebook more accessible and useful.
One of the most notable things about that plan is the absence of a mention of China. That's of course because Facebook is banned there right now, and can't viably hope to cover it as part of its steady expansion.